The Experience of God: A Review

Sanctum in Heremis

David Bentley Hart, The Experience of God: A Review

Previously I reviewed David Bentley Hart’s Atheist Delusions. His The Experience of God: Being, Consciousness, Bliss is a newer book written for a similar purpose. Once again, the title threatens to mislead. The Experience of God is not about mystical or ascetic experiences of God; it is about God as philosophically understood and held in common by the major theistic religions of the world, including Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Sikhism, and Vedantic and Bhaktic Hinduism. Hart uses his language as ecumenically as possible; the titles of his three central chapters are taken from Sanskrit, and he quotes from not only the Church Fathers, but also a variety of Sufi mystics, Jewish philosophers, Indian sages, etc. Hart believes these religions all share a core understanding of God—the God, as opposed to gods—which can be defined more or less acceptably to…

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4 Responses to The Experience of God: A Review

  1. John M. says:

    I am reading this rewarding book right now; slowly; oh so slowly. Indeed this is not an easy read but I, like the author of this review find some parts more assessable than others as will you if you choose to read it. DBH’s book clarifies and defines many common misconceptions and issues at least for me so even on this simple level it is of great aid. I might recommend reading Jim Holt’s, ‘Why does the World Exist?‘ as a primer. Holt is not a believer but unlike Dawkins, Hitchens and their dismissive kind he is a true intellectual.

    It seems the question of God and existence are inextricably linked doesn’t DBH suggest G-d is that which is in-between existence and non-existence … well, buckle up and read; for as you know these ultimate questions are a compelling ride at any speed.


    • Fr Aidan Kimel says:

      Thanks for the recommendation of the Holt book, John. I may have to get myself a copy of it. It looks like the kind of book I’d enjoy.


  2. Fr Aidan Kimel says:

    For those who might have missed it, I attempted a five-part blog review of The Experience of God several months ago. I think Corvus Marinus did a much better job than I did.


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